Donald Trump goes after anonymous sources, says stories that use them are ‘fiction’
President Trump on Wednesday slammed the media’s use of unnamed sources and said any article using an anonymous informant should be considered “fiction.”
When you see “anonymous source,” stop reading the story, it is fiction! Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 29, 2018
The president argued that “many anonymous sources don’t even exist.”
He specifically went after CNN, accusing the network of being the “enemy of the people” and being “caught red-handed.”
“Anonymous Sources are really starting to BURN the media.” @FoxNews The fact is that many anonymous sources don’t even exist. They are fiction made up by the Fake News reporters. Look at the lie that Fake CNN is now in. They got caught red handed! Enemy of the People! Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 29, 2018
Last month, CNN cited anonymous sources in a report that claimed Mr. Trump’s former personal attorney Michael Cohen knew the president was aware and approved of the infamous Trump Tower meeting from June 2016.
However, the legitimacy of that story was thrown into question when Mr. Cohen’s lawyer, Lanny Davis, revealed himself to be one of those sources and walked back the claim in interviews with The Associated Press and The Washington Post.
CNN continues to stand by its reporting.
The Trump administration also uses anonymous sources. The White House regularly conducts briefings for reporters on the condition of anonymity.
The president himself appeared to promote a Daily Caller report Tuesday morning that relied on unnamed officials to claim that Chinese hackers gained access to Hillary Clinton’s email server while she served as secretary of state.
Despite Mr. Trump’s harping on anonymity in the media, he reportedly used the pseudonym John Miller to promote stories about himself.
The Washington Post published that report after obtaining a recording of an interview that “Mr. Miller” conducted in 1991 with People magazine.